Tolls on Irish roads to rise by up to 60c per journey from January

TTI says toll rates on the national road network ‘are regulated through inflation’

Motorists are to be hit with the highest-permitted toll charge hikes – up to 60 cent per journey – across the country’s motorway network within weeks, following a decision to raise tolls in line with inflation.

In a move that will increase pressures on commuters and businesses during the cost-of-living crisis, the State-owned M50 will up its tolls by just over 9 per cent while the public-private partnership (PPP) motorways have been allowed to bring in “maximum tolls” allowed under agreements with the State, The Irish Times has learned.

The new prices come into effect on January 1st.

State roads operator Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) confirmed that the State and the PPP companies have “discretion” in setting the tolls. While they are restricted from increasing the tolls beyond inflation, they do not have to match rising consumer prices.


Under the new pricing regime, tolls for cars on the M50 will rise for the first time in a decade from €2.10 for tag users to €2.30. For drivers captured on video going through the barrier-free toll, fares will jump from €2.70 to €2.90.

Unregistered cars will be charged €3.50 – up from €3.20.

Vans, trucks and buses will also see toll increases. Tagged goods vehicles (less than 2,000kg) and buses will be charged €3.20, up from €3, €3.80 on video, an increase of 30 cent, and €4.40 if unregistered, up from €4.10.

Heavier-goods vehicles also face similar toll rises of 9 per cent.

On the M1, M7, M8, N6, N25 at Waterford and N18 Limerick Tunnel, tolls for cars will go up from €2 to €2.10. Buses and large goods vehicles (LGV) will see price increases from €3.50 to €3.80. Hauliers face hikes from €4.90 to €5.40 and €6.30 to €6.80 per journey.

On the M3, car drivers will have to pay €1.60, up from €1.50. Tolls for buses and LGVs will rise from €2.30 to €2.40 while charges for larger trucks increase from €3 to €3.20 and from €3.70 to €4.

On the M4 the toll for cars will rise from €3 to €3.20. For buses and LGVs it will go from €4.50 to €4.90, while larger lorries face increases from €6 to €6.50 and from €7.30 to €7.90.

Dublin Tunnel is the only tolled road not upping its prices.

In a statement, TTI said all tolls on the national road network “are regulated through inflation [Consumer Price Index] and cannot go above inflation”.

“Due to the inflationary impact during 2022, toll rates across the national road network will increase in 2023,” a TII spokesman said.

On the M50, he added that it was a “user pay-funded motorway” and that tolls funded its maintenance and operation.

“A deferment of the toll increase on the M50 would have required funding to be reallocated from other national road projects and reduced funding for asset management and renewal activities,” he said.

TII confirmed the eight public-private partnership (PPP) companies running the other motorways “submitted their toll charge calculations as part of their annual toll plans”.

“TII have reviewed these submissions and concur with the maximum toll charges calculated,” it added. Toll charges on these routes include VAT at 23 per cent.

“All PPP companies have proposed setting their 2023 appropriate tolls at the 2023 maximum tolls,” TTI said.

“The CPI increased by 8.6 per cent between August 2021 and August 2022 and this has resulted in increased tolls on all PPP schemes.”

Brian Hutton

Brian Hutton is a freelance journalist and Irish Times contributor